The IRS has dozens of addresses. If you mail your tax forms to the wrong address, your taxes could be lost, marked as late, or processed much more slowly than normal.
How do you know where to mail your federal taxes?
There are many different IRS addresses depending on where you live, what tax form you’re filing, and whether you’re including a payment. These addresses can also change from one year to the next.
Never assume that you have the right IRS address. Also, don’t use an address from non-IRS resources.
If you’re filing a tax form, the address to use will be in the instructions. If you’re responding to an IRS notice or letter, it will tell you how to reply.
You can also look up the correct address using this IRS link.
Should I send the IRS certified mail?
Many people like to mail tax forms and payments using certified mail. It’s not required, but it can provide peace of mind.
Having proof of mailing helps you in case your tax return or payment gets lost in the mail. If the IRS doesn’t receive your forms or payments, it will usually let you provide proof of mailing to avoid penalties.
As an alternative to certified mail, you may want to use a Priority Mail flat-rate envelope. It’s similar in cost, and you don’t need to go to the post office. While the IRS won’t have to sign for Priority Mail, there are almost no situations where this matters since taxes generally go by the postmark date not when it arrives.
What do I do if I used the wrong address?
If you used the wrong address, the IRS will probably get your mail to the right place eventually. You’re just increasing the chances of things getting lost or delayed.
If you’re worried, you may want to call the IRS and ask if they have a record of what you sent.
If you choose to send a copy to the correct address, attach a letter that you’re sending duplicate tax forms because you used the wrong address. Include the date you originally sent them.
It’s usually not a good idea to send a duplicate payment unless you’re OK with the IRS cashing both checks and issuing a refund later. Stopping a check to the IRS can cause serious issues.
Is it better to pay the IRS online?
Most people find that it’s better to pay the IRS online even if you’re sending them documents you can’t file online.
When you pay online, you get instant payment confirmation and don’t have to worry about your payment getting lost in the mail. You can pay with your bank account for free. Debit and credit card fees are often similar to what you’d pay for certified mail, and you don’t have to leave your house.